Saturday, February 20, 2010

Provision of social support to individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome

Provision of social support to individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome

Journal: Journal of Clinical Psychology

Authors: Leonard A. Jason [1 *], Nicole Roesner [1], Nicole Porter
[1], Brittany Parenti [1], Jennifer Mortensen [2], Lindsay Till [3]

[1] DePaul University
[2] Michigan State University
[3]Northwestern University

*Correspondence to Leonard A. Jason, Director, Center for Community
Research, 990 W. Fullerton Ave., Suite 3100, Chicago, IL 60614
email: Leonard A. Jason

The authors appreciate the financial assistance provided by the
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (grant numbers
AI36295 and AI49720).
We also thank the following people for their help on the project:
Carole Howard, Patrick Holiday, Gail Schoebacher, Mary Thompson,
Sandy Reyes, Samra Cheema, Gina Delucca, Blair Coleman, Kimberly
Korkowski, and Laura Thomas.

The present study evaluated a buddy program designed to provide
support for individuals with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).

The intervention involved weekly visits by a student
paraprofessional, who helped out with tasks that needed to be done in
an effort to reduce some of the taxing demands and responsibilities
that participants regularly encountered.

This model of rehabilitation focused on avoiding overexertion in
persons with CFS, aiming to avoid setbacks and relapses while
increasing their tolerance for activity.
Participants with CFS were
randomly assigned to either a 4-month buddy intervention or a control

Post-test results showed that individuals who received a student
buddy intervention had significantly greater reductions in fatigue
severity and increases in vitality than individuals in the control
There were no significant changes between groups for
physical functioning and stress.

Buddy interventions that help patients with CFS reduce overexertion
and possibly remain within their energy envelopes can be thought of
as representing a different paradigm than nonpharmacologic
interventions that focus only on increasing levels of activity
through graded exercise.

© 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. J Clin Psychol 66: 249-258, 2010.  

* * *
I will note that at the point that I decided my health was more important than a spotless house, my health started to improve.  I hired someone to do the essential cleaning, didn't worry about a little clutter, and spent  a lot of my time horizontal.  Voila, my health stopped declining and turned around.

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